Book Trailer The Noble Train

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Waiting For Superman

Go see this movie. Go see it for your children, go see it for your school, go see  it for your country. Because if we believe American is in decline then we should at least know why the last great chapter of this country is closing down on us in the beginning of the twenty first century. You cannot escape that feeling anymore. And you wonder where it all began. Why do our towns look like burned out rust belt towns with no commerce except for some river boat pulled in for a last gasp of economic resuscitation? Why is our culture bankrupt and vapid?Why are we trailing the world now ? It had to start with our kids.

This documentary should not be political. Waiting for Superman should not make teachers coil up and dig in and say no way. The union should not say this is the Antichrist of all film making because it suggests that tenure is not a good thing for our children and that charter schools are not anomalies. Wisconsin is unfortunate because it casts a political light on the question of what is wrong with our schools? Why will we have only 53 million skilled workers for 130 million high tech jobs in 2020? Why do our tech companies go halfway around the world right now to find the engineers they need. Why are we almost last in math and science in the Industrialized nations?

Our schools are in decline because they are incapable of change. As a parent I get this. I have seen this. I have seen good and bad teachers, but the thought they are on equal footing is unacceptable. It is not a matter of economics anymore. It would be nice if we could assume this only exists in parts of the country, but our entire country did not test up to the proficiency standards in math and science for eight graders. Now why is that? Could it be, as the film so eloquently points out, it has become all about the adults and not the kids.

The film ends with a challenge. Do something. Do something to make our schools better. I hope I can do more, but the best I can do right now is to tell you to watch this movie and pass it on. Maybe then we can figure out what to do next.
Rocket Man will be out in April

Books by William Hazelgrove